I may be stating the obvious here, but this pandemic sucks.

I've had it.

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Sorry for the rant, but after being sick from COVID for eleven days, I have no patience left.

I hate seeing people get ill, and it's heartbreaking to see so many staples of our community close due to the outbreak.

Last year, so many long-standing and brand new businesses had to close their doors forever.

The reasons for the closures varied.

Many establishments found it literally impossible to find help. Some still can't find employees.

It's amazing how many help wanted signs you see as you drive up and down 35, 9, 37, just about any road in Monmouth and Ocean counties.

Even though the additional unemployment money has stopped coming in, it still hasn't seemed to fix the workforce issue.

You can't run a business if you don't have employees.

The other side of the story is just how expensive everything is now.

The cost for rent, supplies, utilities, etc. is through the roof.

Your big box stores and chains can manage the operating costs, but many mom and pops just can't sustain.

Couple that with the financial hole many businesses are digging out of when the state was shut down, and it makes for a no-win situation.

Another victim to these awful circumstances is an eatery that has been making customers happy and serving the community since 1974.

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Google Maps
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On Sunday, January 2, Eli's Hot Bagels in Aberdeen announced on Facebook that they were closing their doors.

Don't confuse this with Eli's in Freehold.

48 years ago, Eli and his brother Sam opened a bagel haven that Aberdeen, Matawan, and the surrounding area would come to love.

Eli's Hot Bagels
Eli's Hot Bagels
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The Facebook announcement cited a landlord issue as one of the reasons for the shutdown.

It certainly wasn't a lack of customers. Many commented on social media expressing their disappointment and gratitude.

Very disheartened once I heard the news. Was there Christmas morning as has been our tradition for the last 15 years. Will miss having you guys around. Good luck!
My family has been going to your place since I was a kid.
I was very happy to have been able to visit every day I was in New Jersey during Thanksgiving. You will be missed by my family and I.
So sorry to see this — you’re an absolute institution locally, and you will definitely be missed by my family and many others in the area. Best wishes in whatever comes next for the Eli's team.

Thanks to the owners and staff of Eli's for many decades of doughy goodness.

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